Disagreeing with old friends
#31
(05-12-2012, 11:48 AM)JayneK Wrote: I have mentioned before that my best friend since childhood recently became an atheist.  Her husband, who is also an old friend, did too.  We made a brief visit to them when we were in the area to attend the March for Life.  I mentioned to them how there was a small counter-demonstration of "pro-choicers" who were shouting at us and throwing condoms.  I added a comment along the lines that this was good for our children to see this and understand the pro-choice position. 

Our friends did not say anything at the time but have sent an email to say that they are strongly pro-choice now and are insulted that we spoke slightingly of pro-choicers.

I am hoping for advice and prayers concerning this situation.

Why did they e-mail you in the first place?  Why are they insulted that you expressed yourself freely?  You can apologize by saying that you did not know that they are intolerant of pro-life positions which do not make the claim that tolerance is a virtue.  You can ask them what they expect of you and then ask them if they are not imposing their brand of liberalism on you.  Error contains the seeds of its own defeat.  Chesterton was the English speaking master of finding the hypocrisy in all errors. If you want, since they say they are "strongly" pro-kid killing, they should be able to mount a suitable apologetic for their position instead of being insulted. Odds are they can't, so they are insulted, which gives you the clue that everything they believe is built on emotion.  Ask them when they had their abortion as well. Did they find out the child was disabled and didn't want to deal with it? 

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#32
It is really hard.  I had a best friend from college who lived with a man for many years outside of marriage and they knew it was sin!  I prayed and prayed for what to say but there really were no words.  I prayed, and loved her and set the example of faithfulness as best I could. And 4 years ago I stood up at her wedding. Sometimes our words make the hearts of the others more obstinent.  We can maybe say the words once and then PRAY.  We cannot outrun grace and if someone refuses the grace, we cannot force it.
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#33
(05-12-2012, 11:27 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 10:18 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:36 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:23 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:19 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 12:25 PM)James02 Wrote: Go after the atheism first if you must.  Drop the pro-life argument.  I can't see any atheist LOGICALLY supporting the pro-life position.  If an atheist is pro-life, it is because his spiritual side is not completely walled off yet.  But it is an illogical position for them to hold.  There is no right and wrong without God.

I respectfully disagree. Confucius, Buddha, and the ancient Greeks (Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, those guys) all developed complex ethical systems without a belief in God (at least not the sort of God that we believe in). And I know many atheists who are every bit as moral as the Catholics I know (more so in some cases). Murder, theft, calumny, adultery, etc. are condemned by almost all human societies, regardless of their religious beliefs or lack of them. And the Old Testament God sanctioned countless atrocities that would horrify just about anyone today. The bolded statement above has no basis in reality as far as I can see.

Partly correct.  The philosophical "Prime Mover" is exactly the sort of God we believe in as Christians.

Not as regards morality. The gods of the Greeks were not moral at all. They were powerful and immortal, but they had all the same moral faults and character flaws as humans. And to some extent, so did the God of the Old Testament.

This is plainly heretical.

What are you going to do, excommunicate me?

Snarky but you miss the point.
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#34
(05-12-2012, 09:36 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:23 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:19 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 12:25 PM)James02 Wrote: Go after the atheism first if you must.  Drop the pro-life argument.  I can't see any atheist LOGICALLY supporting the pro-life position.  If an atheist is pro-life, it is because his spiritual side is not completely walled off yet.  But it is an illogical position for them to hold.  There is no right and wrong without God.

I respectfully disagree. Confucius, Buddha, and the ancient Greeks (Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, those guys) all developed complex ethical systems without a belief in God (at least not the sort of God that we believe in). And I know many atheists who are every bit as moral as the Catholics I know (more so in some cases). Murder, theft, calumny, adultery, etc. are condemned by almost all human societies, regardless of their religious beliefs or lack of them. And the Old Testament God sanctioned countless atrocities that would horrify just about anyone today. The bolded statement above has no basis in reality as far as I can see.

Partly correct.  The philosophical "Prime Mover" is exactly the sort of God we believe in as Christians.

Not as regards morality. The gods of the Greeks were not moral at all.

Plato was highly critical of the Greek gods as portrayed in the Homeric epics for that very reason.
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#35
(05-12-2012, 10:18 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:36 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:23 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:19 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 12:25 PM)James02 Wrote: Go after the atheism first if you must.  Drop the pro-life argument.  I can't see any atheist LOGICALLY supporting the pro-life position.  If an atheist is pro-life, it is because his spiritual side is not completely walled off yet.  But it is an illogical position for them to hold.  There is no right and wrong without God.

I respectfully disagree. Confucius, Buddha, and the ancient Greeks (Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, those guys) all developed complex ethical systems without a belief in God (at least not the sort of God that we believe in). And I know many atheists who are every bit as moral as the Catholics I know (more so in some cases). Murder, theft, calumny, adultery, etc. are condemned by almost all human societies, regardless of their religious beliefs or lack of them. And the Old Testament God sanctioned countless atrocities that would horrify just about anyone today. The bolded statement above has no basis in reality as far as I can see.

Partly correct.  The philosophical "Prime Mover" is exactly the sort of God we believe in as Christians.

Not as regards morality. The gods of the Greeks were not moral at all. They were powerful and immortal, but they had all the same moral faults and character flaws as humans. And to some extent, so did the God of the Old Testament.

This is plainly heretical.

As is denying the Immaculate Conception to be a divinely revealed dogma.
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#36
You'll find this very curious. Nat Hentoff claims that while on a plane ride he sat next to Jesse Jackson in the old days, and Jesse convinced Nat, an atheist, to be pro-life. I've seen him say he'd like to talk to Jesse to re-convince him pro-life is right. Curious huh ?

tim
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#37
Thanks for your comments and especially your prayers.  I was feeling sad today, thinking that this incident seems to have been the last straw for our friendship.  But then I had a great sense of comfort come to me with the realization that what I have lost is insignificant in comparison to what I have been given.  I have faith in Jesus Christ and am a member of His Church.  This is of infinitely greater value than friends, family or anything of this world. 
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#38
Smile Deo gratias, JayneK!  Smile
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#39
(05-13-2012, 01:41 PM)Resurrexi Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 10:18 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:36 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:23 PM)Parmandur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 09:19 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 12:25 PM)James02 Wrote: Go after the atheism first if you must.  Drop the pro-life argument.  I can't see any atheist LOGICALLY supporting the pro-life position.  If an atheist is pro-life, it is because his spiritual side is not completely walled off yet.  But it is an illogical position for them to hold.  There is no right and wrong without God.

I respectfully disagree. Confucius, Buddha, and the ancient Greeks (Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, those guys) all developed complex ethical systems without a belief in God (at least not the sort of God that we believe in). And I know many atheists who are every bit as moral as the Catholics I know (more so in some cases). Murder, theft, calumny, adultery, etc. are condemned by almost all human societies, regardless of their religious beliefs or lack of them. And the Old Testament God sanctioned countless atrocities that would horrify just about anyone today. The bolded statement above has no basis in reality as far as I can see.

Partly correct.  The philosophical "Prime Mover" is exactly the sort of God we believe in as Christians.

Not as regards morality. The gods of the Greeks were not moral at all. They were powerful and immortal, but they had all the same moral faults and character flaws as humans. And to some extent, so did the God of the Old Testament.

This is plainly heretical.

As is denying the Immaculate Conception to be a divinely revealed dogma.

True after 1854, but really unrelated to this thread.

Grasshopper, by attacking God's character and immutability, has placed himself entirely out of the fold of Christianity. There's really no faith left after that, I'm afraid.
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#40
(05-13-2012, 02:56 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: Grasshopper, by attacking God's character and immutability, has placed himself entirely out of the fold of Christianity. There's really no faith left after that, I'm afraid.

It's not quite that simple. My purpose is not to attack God's character and immutability -- I'm just reporting what's in the Old Testament. According to the OT, God really did command the Israelites to commit genocide. If you don't believe me, read the book of Joshua (I think there is some of it in Numbers and Deuteronomy as well), and pay attention to the details. It's all there. He also commits genocide Himself (the Great Flood, and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah). You can argue that the adult populations in those cases were wicked enough to deserve it. Maybe so, but what about the children, babies, and animals? There are only two options: (1) God Himself does not live up to the morality He demands of us (He is certainly not "pro-life"); or (2) The Biblical accounts are not accurate. You can deny one or the other of those, but I don't see any way to deny both. If faith depends on denying both, then you're right -- there's no faith left for me.

I'm not talking about the "problem of evil" here. I can reconcile myself to the existence of evil (God's permissive will), but in the above examples, God does not just permit evil -- He commits it or commands it. That is a harder nut to crack. "There is no right or wrong without God" (James02) -- and yet the God Who is the supposed basis of our morality commanded His chosen people to kill babies. How do you justify that? I can't. Why should my behavior be any better than God's?
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